Were you recently injured in a car accident? Maybe you were bitten by a neighbor’s dog? In any case, if you were injured by someone else’s actions or inactions, you have a case for a personal injury lawsuit. Note, though, that if you’re going to pursue such a lawsuit, you’re strongly advised to seek legal counsel.
Without a seasoned and proven personal injury lawyer on your side, you could have trouble winning a fair settlement with the offending individual’s insurance company. That begs the question: how do you find the right Virginia Beach personal injury lawyer? We’re going to get into that below, telling you exactly what to consider in a lawyer when pursuing a personal injury settlement.
What’s the Best Way to Find a Personal Injury Lawyer in Virginia Beach, VA?
When searching for a personal injury lawyer in Virginia Beach, there are a number of strategies you can utilize. That said, the best strategy is to look at results on a search engine. Search for something like “Virginia Beach personal injury lawyers” and see what pops up. Then, compare the many options to one another. When comparing, keep the following things in mind.
The Lawyer’s Reputation
One of the most important things to consider about your prospective personal injury lawyer is their reputation. Are they regarded in a primarily positive light? Or, is there generally a negative opinion about them? You can determine this in a number of ways. That said, the best way to find this out is to read reviews from past clients. You can find these on sites like Google, Facebook, and Avvo.
The Lawyer’s Experience
Not only do you want a lawyer with ample years of experience but with experience in your specific type of case as well. For instance, if you were involved in a car accident, you want a lawyer who’s represented many car accident victims. If you were bitten by a dog, you want a lawyer who’s represented many dog bite victims. We advise choosing a lawyer with a minimum of 2 years of real-world experience.
The Lawyer’s Track Record
Experience alone isn’t good enough. In order for it to matter, it has to be positive experience. In other words, you need to make sure that your chosen lawyer has a good track record. Most lawyers list positive outcomes from past court cases on their websites. Use these listings to determine whether a prospective lawyer has what it takes to represent you.
The Lawyer’s Rates
Personal injury lawyers usually charge contingency fees to their clients. This is a fee consisting of a specific percentage of the case’s monetary outcome. In most cases, personal injury lawyers charge contingency fees between 33% and 40%. The good thing is that you typically don’t have to pay personal injury lawyers much upfront. So, in theory, you could hire essentially any personal injury lawyer you want. Just know that the more reputable and successful the lawyer, the more they’ll take of your settlement after the case has been decided.
Common Causes and Locations of Auto Accidents in Virginia Beach
There are all sorts of reasons for car accidents occurring in Virginia Beach. That said, some reasons stand out more than others, and in more specific types of locations as well. Speeding is a common cause of car accidents, especially when done in inclement weather conditions such as rain or snow. Distracted driving often leads to accidents as well. This includes driving while eating, texting, talking on the phone, or otherwise.
Other causes of car accidents in Virginia Beach include tailgating, driving while impaired, driving recklessly, and failing to use turn signals. Accidents are the most prominent in parking lots, at stop signs, and at stop lights. Intersections in general are also common locations for car accidents, as are high-speed rural roads.
What Makes Virginia Beach Different from Chesapeake and Norfolk, VA?
When compared to Chesapeake and Norfolk, Virginia Beach, VA is a little more urban and a little less urban, respectively. This is to say that it’s more city-like than Chesapeake and less city-like than Norfolk. You might say that it possesses a dense suburban vibe. Virginia Beach is a hugely popular resort town. In 2019, it saw 19 million visitors. Norfolk sees many tourists as well. However, it has a quieter vibe than Virginia Beach overall. Chesapeake is technically located off the coast and therefore doesn’t see as much tourism.
What Types of Personal Injury Cases Does Decker Handle in Virginia Beach?
Decker handles a wide variety of personal injury cases. Our primary personal injury specialties include the following:
The cases we most commonly take on are car accidents. These run the gamut from rear-end collisions to drunk driving cases to motorcycle accidents and more. If you were injured in a car accident, we can represent you in court and help you obtain an insurance settlement.
Were you injured by a product that you purchased? If so, depending on the circumstances, you might be able to file a personal injury lawsuit. We’ll help you secure compensation in this lawsuit, ensuring that your injuries don’t severely impact your financial situation.
In some cases, medical practitioners will cause accidental injury to the patient they’re operating on. This is known as medical malpractice and it’s undoubtedly something a patient can sue for. We’ve represented countless clients in medical malpractice cases, helping malpractice victims to secure reasonable compensation.
Were you injured while on the job? Is your employer trying to refuse you workers’ compensation? If so, we’re the ones to see. We’ve represented many clients in work-related personal injury cases. Regardless of the extent of your injury, we’ll work to secure you the settlement you deserve.
Slip and Fall Injuries
We also take on slip-and-fall cases. These are incidents in which a person slips or trips on a person’s property and injures themselves. If the slip or trip is due to the property owner’s actions or inactions, a lawsuit can be filed. Interested in pursuing such a case? Give us a call for a free consultation!
What Happens After You Get Into a Personal Injury Case in Virginia Beach?
Let’s say that you decide to go ahead with your personal injury case. You’re probably wondering what will occur after you’ve gotten into it. Generally speaking, it’s the following:
You’ll Meet With Your Lawyer
First and foremost, you’ll meet with your lawyer to discuss your situation. Your lawyer will answer any questions that you might have and discuss with you in detail the processes and roadblocks that lie ahead. They’ll also help you determine whether you have a legitimate claim to argue. To help your lawyer make this deliberation, make sure to have as much evidence on hand as possible.
Your Lawyer Will Investigate Your Case
Once you’ve met with your lawyer, they’ll go about investigating your case. They’ll not only look at the evidence you’ve provided but obtain additional evidence from the scene of the incident, if possible. They’ll also contact witnesses to get their side of the story. Once evidence has been collected, your lawyer will call the insurance company that insures the offender. They might even speak with the insurance company’s attorney.
Initially, your lawyer will simply make a claim for you with your insurance company. If the insurance company doesn’t offer reasonable enough compensation, your lawyer will move on to more intensive measures. What are you doing during this time? Your lawyer will handle all of the heavy lifting for you.
You’ll Probably Settle Before Court
Approximately 95% of personal injury cases are settled out of court. Yours will likely be settled before a lawsuit is filed as well. In particular, your lawyer will receive a notice from the insurance company informing you of how much they’re willing to pay in compensation. Your lawyer will then reveal the figure to you and advise you to either accept it or push for more. Negotiations will likely ensue. Note that the final choice is up to you. Your lawyer is simply there for guidance and advice.
You Might Have to File a Lawsuit
In the event that the insurance company’s settlement figure isn’t substantial enough, you’ll have to file a lawsuit. Once the lawsuit is filed, your lawyer will go through legal processes with the insurance company to try and secure the compensation you’re looking for. Depending on the circumstances, personal injury trials can last weeks or even years. You won’t have to be present for all of these proceedings. However, your presence will be required for depositions, should they occur.
The Case Could Go to Mediation
At any point during the legal proceedings, either side can request mediation. Mediation is an alternative form of dispute-solving. It involves each side speaking together with a mediator present to guide and regulate the conversation. The goal of mediation is to come up with a compensation amount everyone can agree on. However, this doesn’t always occur. If you can’t come to an agreement, you’ll simply need to move on to the next step.
The Case Will Go to Trial
If mediation fails, the case will go to trial. Your attorney will argue on your behalf in front of a judge. Then, the insurance company’s side will defend against your attorney’s argument. The judge will hand down a judgement either rewarding you nothing or rewarding you a specific dollar amount. While most personal injury cases end at this point, some are appealed.
How Much Does It Cost to Hire the Decker Law Firm in Virginia Beach, VA?
For personal injury cases, the Decker Law Firm takes 33.3% of the final compensation amount. So, if you’re awarded $200,000, Decker will receive $66,666 and you’ll receive $133,333. This is true whether your case is decided out of court or in court. If you receive no compensation, you won’t have to pay Decker anything at all. We charge no up-front fees either, so you’ll literally pay nothing. What this means, of course, is that there’s no risk in pursuing a personal injury case with us. Yes, you’ll need to devote some of your time to the case. However, you stand to win substantial compensation while standing to lose no money at all.
How Long Has the Decker Law Firm Been Practicing Personal Injury Law in Virginia Beach, VA?
The Decker Law Firm has been practicing personal injury law for 60 years, making it one of the oldest personal injury law firms in Virginia Beach and its surrounding areas. It was started by Peter G. Decker, Jr. and has a bevy of experienced lawyers on its current bench. These lawyers include Peter Decker III, Joel Weintraub, Martin Thomas, George Neskis, Martin Thomas, Jr., Michelle Parker, Jennifer Gebler, and Jeffrey P. Partington.
We’ve won numerous large personal injury cases for our clients, in some cases winning compensation of up to several millions of dollars. Whether you were involved in a car accident, injured on someone else’s property, or incurred some other type of personal injury, our team can help you obtain the damages you deserve.
Looking for the Right Virginia Beach Personal Injury Lawyer?
If you are, indeed, searching for the right Virginia Beach personal injury lawyer, look no further. The Decker Law Firm has you covered. Our law office has helped countless clients sue for injuries, guiding them through the legal process on the way to securing substantial settlements from insurance companies. The top personal injury law firm in Virginia Beach, VA, we’ll do everything we can to secure you a favorable outcome. Contact us now for a free consultation!